A small-cap company’s stock has soared by 500% since the beginning of the year, where S&P 500 is down by 11.5% year-to-date. This company is Novavax, Inc. (NASDAQ:NVAX), a biotech company that has been in the spotlight for developing a vaccine for COVID-19. While it is possible that the company makes a significant fortune out of it, one should remember that its peers are also working towards the development of a vaccine for COVID-19.
The primary focus of Novavax lies in the development of vaccines for infectious diseases. Although the company is yet to have its product available in the market, it has developed a potential flu vaccine-NanoFlu- for adults (specifically those above the age of 65). The company claims the vaccine NanoFlu to be more effective than the already existing vaccines (from some current market leaders) on the market.
Further, Novavax also announced positive results for its phase 3 of the clinical trial. This trial was conducted to test the safety of NanoFlu and the capability of the vaccine to trigger the body’s immune response – also known as immunogenicity. The company now plans on submitting to the US FDA a Biologics License Application for the vaccine, seeking accelerated approval.
Novavax has had some experience of dealing with other strands of coronavirus. It was thus able to recognize an antibody that could possibly help fight the SARS-CoV-2 virus (known for causing COVID-19). NVX-CoV2373 – the possible vaccine- is claimed to have shown high immunogenicity and generated effective antibodies against SARS-CoV-2 in the preclinical trials. The human clinical trials are expected to start in mid-May.
However, Novavax is not the only company developing vaccines for COVID-19. As per the World Health Organization(WHO), there are over 70 such vaccines being developed, three of which are already undergoing clinical trials.